Tonight’s episode of Twisted saw Danny facing expulsion for Cole’s poisoning and Rico and Lacey teaming up to stop the release of the sex tape. I wouldn’t call it a bad episode, but it wasn’t a good one mainly because of the priority once again being placed on Jo and her feelings over Danny’s and especially Lacey’s, an unfortunate habit which is inching my Jo opinions to the negative end of the spectrum.
Gloria Crane returns (I’ll take this opportunity to remark on how bitter I am that we’ve seen more of Gloria than we have of Judy) to get Danny kicked out of school culminating in a messy expulsion hearing that ends with Danny being expelled. Damning testimony from Archie and some others has it going against Danny, and Cole’s honest and uncertain addition doesn’t help or crucify him. Tess is almost helpful in calling Gloria out on her bias, but it takes a bad turn, and Karen ends up calling Regina a whore in front of everyone. Add in Jo professing her love for Danny, and it all gets very uncomfortable for everyone, including me and my mom, who took a moment to roll around in our secondhand embarrassment.
Since we’re on the topic of Jo, I’m trying to like her, but it’s hard. After my mostly positive feelings regarding her and Lacey last week, I thought it would be easier, but I’m having trouble with the show’s fixation on coddling her. From the jump Jo’s come off as the baby of the trio. From her childlike naivete when it comes to Danny to her immature lashing out when she doesn’t get her way, Jo’s definitely a couple steps behind Danny and Lacey in maturity. This is in addition to her teenagery inability to look around her own issues and see other points of view. With the release of the sex tape, I’m confident in my guess that Jo’s going to be all wrapped up in Danny liking Lacey and their secret relationship, but she won’t acknowledge the infringement of Lacey and Danny’s privacy and the humiliating sex tape floating around their tiny town.
The show, and Jo herself, all prioritize her feelings, and so do the other characters. Rico spends this episode trying to squash the sex tape to keep Jo from seeing it (though to be fair he does mention how badly Lacey will feel when she finds out), and Lacey only comes around to actively trying to stop its release when she finds out about Jo’s feelings for Danny. Jo’s not a baby. She can handle herself just fine, and if there was any doubt, her actions in this episode (trying to blackmail Cole, freezing out Tyler, snarking at Danny) proved it. She’ll survive knowing that Danny doesn’t like her but likes Lacey instead. Lots of people have been okay with similar situations.
Not to Lacey’s reaction to the sex tape. She’s horrified when she first hears but her feelings become far more muted, only kicking into overdrive on Jo’s behalf. For my sanity I’m going to tell myself this is a positive for Lacey’s character. She’s said over and over that her friends are important. After getting over the initial shock of being filmed having sex, she wants to make sure Sarita and Phoebe are still going to be in her corner when it comes out since she’s too uncomfortable to confront Doug. This leads to a really nice Sarita moment when she tells Lacey she’s her best friend and always will be because there’s not a thing that she couldn’t forgive Lacey for (my fingers are crossed for a scene of Sarita defending Lacey from the mockery of their classmates). Lacey could deal with the fallout from the video with some help from her friends which is a category Jo now fits into, and Lacey doesn’t want to jeopardize the delicate peace she and Jo have established (which is very contrary to what we’re likely to get from Jo in two weeks).
Lacey’s reaction could be a testament to her character, but Twisted has a problem with focusing on Lacey when it should be about her so this could also be (and most likely is) another writing mistake. The sex tape’s reveal being stuck on Jo learning that a boy doesn’t like her back is further proof of it. When the mid-season finale airs I won’t be surprised to see Jo lashing out at Lacey and Danny and probably making questionable decisions in the name of teen angst while Lacey and Danny will be concerned for her well-being and trying to earn her forgiveness.
I’m twenty years old so I was still a teenager awhile ago, but I’ve had enough teen angst. I had my own to deal with, and I worked through that already. I don’t need Jo’s, too. But please, Twisted, give me some of Lacey’s. I’ll take it and be glad.
Leave your thoughts in the comments.